Apples vs. Ho-Ho’s
I have a 35-40 minute commute to and from CP each day, and as such, I’m a huge fan of listening to books on cd. While I do listen to my fair share of sports talk radio, I figured that since I spend roughly 480 minutes per week in my car, I might as well get a little smarter in the process. To that end, one of my go-to sources for audio books (other than the public library, of course) is a website called Audible.com.
Last week, I downloaded a book titled The End of Food, by Paul Roberts.
While at times, the narrator’s voice makes me want throw my head through my windshield, the book itself gives a fascinating look into the world of food production, marketing, and all the shady business (not to mention health ramifications) in between.
All in the name of profits.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the quality of the food we’re eating is, well, crap.
To illustrate this point, last week I was having a conversation with one of our female clients about those 100 calorie snack packs that seem to be all the rave nowadays. In his book, Roberts refers to these as “me time foods.”
What’s interesting, and Roberts illustrates this point a little more eloquently than myself, is that people often don’t recognize the difference between needs and desires- particularly with regards to the foods we eat. Incidentally, this is exactly, I feel, why 100 calorie snack packs are targeted towards women. Why eat “real” food when you can indulge in ho-ho’s and cupcakes? The food industry has done a remarkable job at taking people’s desires and making them think they’re a need.
On more than one occasion, I’ve had female clients balk at the idea of eating an apple- because it has GASP, carbs- yet they’ll eat an entire package (or two) of those snack packs faster than you can say Supercallafrajalistic Expialadocious.
That’s not to say we shouldn’t satisfy our sweet tooth every now and then. However it just goes to show, almost resoundingly so, the disconnect that exists in modern culture that we’ll oftentimes choose processed junk over real food. Worse still, we think it’s a healthier option. It IS only a hundred calories.
Lets do a little comparison.
Ingredients of an Apple: Apple
Ingredients of Your Typical 100 Calorie Snack Pack (as taken from the Nabisco website):
UNBLEACHED ENRICHED FLOUR (WHEAT FLOUR, NIACIN, REDUCED IRON, THIAMINE MONONITRATE (VITAMIN B1), RIBOFLAVIN (VITAMIN B2), FOLIC ACID), SUGAR, CANOLA OIL, COCOA (PROCESSED WITH ALKALI), DEXTROSE, CORNSTARCH, LEAVENING (BAKING SODA AND/OR CALCIUM PHOSPHATE), COLOR ADDED, SALT, VANILLIN (ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR). CONTAINS: WHEAT.
And before I get bombarded with internet heroes informing me that as long as someone eats within their caloric range, it won’t matter. I understand that. You’re missing the point, though.
What’s it say when a vast majority of women (men, too) will deny themselves nutritious foods (like fruit), but think nothing of downing 100 calorie snack pack(s) because it fits within their 1100 kcal per day diet?
I’d be interested in your comments below……